Inflation also increases menstrual poverty in Serbia

Illustration: Menstrual cramps / Photo: Pexels

Annual inflation of about nine percent and average annual inflation of about 13 percent will also affect the worsening of menstrual poverty in Serbia, making it difficult for girls and women to access sanitary products for menstrual hygiene.

Menstrual poverty, although a long neglected issue, is slowly coming into the focus of medical, social and political dialogues. This implies the unavailability of menstrual products, sanitary facilities and education about menstrual hygiene, writes the Mashina portal.

Research shows that in 2021, over 500 million women worldwide lived in menstrual poverty. Since menstruation is a natural process that women and girls go through on average once a month during the entire reproductive period, which is estimated at about 3000 days, i.e. eight years of menstruation, menstrual products are not luxuries, but necessary products that are needed on a regular basis basis.

A survey on menstrual poverty conducted by the Society for Human Rights and Civic Participation PaRitter at the end of 2020 showed that due to excessive prices, more than a third of women were forced to buy menstrual products of lower quality, and more than 10 percent did not have the opportunity to buy enough to change them regularly, and they also didn't have enough money at all to buy hygiene products or painkillers during menstruation.

According to the economic policy in the Republic of Serbia, pads and tampons are luxury goods, because the value added tax (VAT) on these products is 20 percent, H1 Serbia reports.

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